82.9 F
Mobile
83.1 F
Huntsville
78 F
Birmingham
70.6 F
Montgomery

7 Things: Britt’s polling lead widens, captured Alabamians seen on Russian TV and more …

7. New regulations for swimming released, restricting transgender participation

  • FINA, the international competitive swimming federation, has decided to restrict transgender women in competition in a 71% approval vote. FINA president Husain Al-Musallam said, “We have to protect the rights of our athletes to compete, but we also have to protect competitive fairness at our events, especially the women’s category at FINA competitions.”

  • For transgender women to be eligible for competition, they had to transition before they were 12 years old or before going through puberty. The policy also prohibits transgender men from competing in the women’s category if they used testosterone hormone treatments during puberty or for over a year. Al-Musallam added that an “open category” could be created, which would “mean that everybody has the opportunity to compete at an elite level…I want all athletes to feel included in being able to develop ideas during this process.”

6. Low unemployment in Alabama continues

  • Governor Kay Ivey’s office has released the unemployment rate for May 2022, showing that the state lowered the unemployment rate to 2.7%, compared to the April rate of 2.8%. In the announcement, Ivey noted “the resiliency of Alabama’s workforce.”

  • Ivey went on to add, “[W]e’re breaking records that were set only a month ago.” She went on to say, “Alabama’s average weekly wages have once again reached a brand-new record high, rising by 20% since May 2019. Alabamians are working, and our business community is reaping the benefits!”

5. Juneteenth is now a state holiday on June 20

  • Today is Juneteenth and is recognized as a state holiday, as announced by Governor Kay Ivey. Juneteenth is observed on June 19, but this year, the holiday is recognized on the following Monday.

  • President Joe Biden declared Juneteenth a federal holiday, but the Alabama Legislature would still have to decide if the holiday would be permanent.

4. COVID vaccines now recommended for those 6 months and older

  • The coronavirus vaccine has now been recommended for people six months and older by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Late last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the Moderna and Pfizer vaccine for those as young as six months.

  • CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said she encouraged “parents and caregivers with questions to talk to their doctor, nurse, or local pharmacist to learn more about the benefits of vaccinations and the importance of protecting their children by getting them vaccinated.”

3. Alabama vets captured in Ukraine shown on Russian TV

  • A Russian state television show recently aired footage of two U.S. military veterans, Alex Drueke and Andy Huynh. Both veterans are from Alabama and were captured in Ukraine in early June.

  • Drueke delivered a message to his mom, letting her know that he’s “alive and I hope to be back home as soon as I can be.” Drueke and Huynh were split up from their group in the Kharkiv region, but they eventually encountered Russian patrol and surrendered.

2. Britt has the support of Tim Scott

  • Just days before the runoff election, U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.) announced that he’d endorsed U.S. Senate candidate Katie Britt. Scott said of his support, “Katie is a strong conservative who will fight to expand 21st century opportunity for every American family and preserve the American Dream for generations to come.”

  • Scott went on to say that Britt “knows that education is the great equalizer in our country, and she’ll work to ensure that each child in America has access to affordable, high-quality education that can unlock their future.”

1. Trump endorsement is boosting Britt

  • Since former President Donald Trump endorsed U.S. Senate candidate Katie Britt in the runoff election, Britt has widened her lead in polls against opponent U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville).

  • A poll previously released by the Alabama Forestry Association before Trump’s endorsement showed Britt had an 18-point lead. Now, Britt has a lead of 26 points, gaining to 58.4%, compared to Brooks at 32.6%. There are still 9% undecided.